Monday, November 30, 2015

"Bono says he's found what he's looking for after U2 singer hires ousted Labour MP Douglas Alexander as a poverty adviser"

  • Singer has given former shadow foreign secretary job at poverty charity
  • Pair are friends since 2000 and U2 dedicated live song to him in 2009
  • Mr Alexander lost his 15,000 majority seat during SNP rout in May

Will someone please tell Bono that he's not Christ?


Anonymous said...

Bono is a Corporate Shill, Tax-Evader and Hypocrite! Another greedy SOB who lost his footings once he joined the ranks of the wealthy and decided he wanted to KEEP it all to spend on a luxury lifestyle.

IF money can't buy happiness - it can buy off unhappiness....

Bono's hypocrisy on Africa, corporate tax avoidance in Ireland

Bono's hypocrisy on Africa and corporate tax avoidance in Ireland has been starkly exposed, at a time when the Dutch government has proposed to reform the tax haven company letter-box system used by not only rock groups such as U2 and the Rolling Stones but 23,000 other entities that for example surreptitiously hide trillions of dollars worth of transactions annually, related to regions such as Africa. The Netherlands has also proposed to renegotiate tax treaties with 23 low-income countries in order that anti-abuse provisions be included in new treaties.

Bono, the U2 frontman and anti-poverty campaigner, is reported by The Irish Times to have defended Ireland’s tax system and the use of Irish companies by multinational giants to reduce their global tax bills, saying that the country was “very pleased to compete on that front.”

U2 for 20 years availed of a 1960s era income tax exemption that was introduced to aid indigent artists and in 2006, in response to the ceiling on its tax-free status, the rock group moved its prime money-making unit to the Netherlands.

Paul McGuinness, the manager of the group, said at the time that Bono and U2 "continue to remain Ireland-based and are personal investors and employers in the country."

"Innovative tax policies have been the bedrock of Ireland's current prosperity," he added. "Like any other business, U2 operates in a tax-efficient manner."

“U2 is in total harmony with our government’s philosophy,” he told The Observer newspaper. “Tax competitiveness has taken our country out of poverty. [The revenue] accept that if you engage in that policy then some people are going to go out, and some people are coming in.”

The Irish Times reports that President Clinton asked the panel group in New York on Tuesday, that included Bono, how big companies such as Google could best use their money in African communities. Mr Ibrahim said, in an impassioned plea, that big companies should pay taxes in Africa.

“All those big companies don’t pay taxes in Africa. That is just not acceptable,” he said. “People need to stand on that issue. Frankly, the whole taxation system around the world is really broken because business gone global but our taxation system is still country-based and then countries compete.”

At the heart of Bono's hypocrisy in New York was his criticism of extractive companies including ExxonMobil, the oil major, for opposing US transparency laws aimed at forcing companies to report how much they pay African states on oil, gas and mining projects to encourage the proper flow of wealth to citizens in those countries.

As for Bono, he surely knows that he inhabits the credibility gap between being an international rich man who lives in many places but pays little in taxes while also being an anti-poverty campaigner.

...and behind those shades, it must hurt to have to defend massive tax avoidance by big western companies in response to a plea for fairness for Africa, from a successful African businessman.

Sheryl Sandberg, chief operating officer of Facebook, on Bono's right, is also familiar with the advantages of the 'Dutch Irish sandwich' tax dodge, as about half of Facebook's global revenues are booked in Dublin:

OrbsCorbs said...

Bono and Brit comedian Russell Brand have Messiah complexes.